Studio News & Gossip East And West – By Cal York
Photoplay January 1927
JOHN ROBERTSON and Josephine Lovett are now cutting and titling “Annie Laurie.” The picture probably will be held for special release and Lillian Gish will begin work soon, under the direction of Clarence Brown.
The Robertsons have bought a home in Beverly Hills. They had planned to make another picture with Miss Gish; but Metro-Goldwyn wants Mr. Robertson to make a special production, as it is too prodigal to keep a star player and a star director on one picture. As for Mr. Robertson, he was one of the few American directors who was using “camera angles” when the technicians were still making all their pictures in long-shots.
CREIGHTON HALE got an extra hour’s sleep two mornings straight by being a clever young chap. Creighton was working on “Annie Laurie” and suggested to Director John Robertson that the Dark Canyon Hills, in which Hale lives, would pass nicely for Scottish Highlands. After looking them over, Robertson agreed and Hale found the company working in his own back yard. Hence the extra hour’s sleep.
The Amateur Movie Producer – Making the Home Movie Production
By John S. Robertson
Mr. ROBERTSON is one of our leading motion picture directors. He is the maker of “Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde,” “Sentimental Tommy,” “Classmates” and other well known photoplays, and recently completed “Annie Laurie,” starring Lillian Gish.
WITH the advent of the new “baby” motion picture camera, as professionals term the little instruments by which any amateur can take pictures that move as easily as of yore he made kodak snapshots, a new and interesting branch of amateur photography has opened up. I refer to amateur photoplays. Amateur theatricals we have had with us these many years, but heretofore translating these to screen drama was too expensive. But, with the use of the new amateur cameras, operated by clockwork, so simply that any amateur can make perfect pictures; taken on a special narrow film that gives nearly three times the action to the foot that the standard professional film does, and—this is important—at a nominal cost, amateur screen plays are as easily arranged as amateur stage productions. In fact—even more easily. In arranging an amateur screen play, the would-be producer must bear in mind one of several things. First, it is desirable to choose outdoor settings as much as possible, as the cameras are designed for outdoor use, and the elaborate electric lighting equipment of a studio is not to be had for such work. However, the amateur may create interior settings after a fashion in this manner:—choose the side of a barn or wall, and on it hang a drape of burlap, hang a few pictures, spread a carpet before it and place furniture on this —and you have a section of an interior setting that will pass very well. You might even use wallpaper, placed on the side of an exterior wall with thumbtacks, for the “interior” wall. Then, at a height of ten feet or so, fasten a sheet by the corners with tacks, and with strings and poles bring it out toward the camera so that it forms a sort of a canopy, over the camera range, to break up the hard shadows. Use nothing heavier than a sheet for this. At once you have a miniature studio at very little cost.
An off-screen picture of a lady who avoids cameras—except professionally.
Need we tell you that when Lillian Gish goes for a canter in the mountains back of Santa Monica, that she rides side-saddle and wears a long divided skirt?
*** Photograph (cropped medium shot on Miss Gish) used to illustrate the original article, even if here, one can notice the year 1924.